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Predicting The Google Phone

Zonk posted more than 6 years ago | from the can-you-goog-me-now dept.

Cellphones 205

An anonymous reader writes "Inside The GPhone: What To Expect From Google's Android Alliance (an article at Information Week) argues that you can predict what the GPhone(s) will look like very easily, simply by listing the technologies of the Open Handset Alliance partners. According to this theory, the phone will have a user interface from Sweden's TAT, VCAST-like multimedia capabilities powered by PacketVideo Corp., and an iPhone-like capacitive touch-screen, from Synaptics. Hardware-wise, it'll probably be built around Texas Instruments' OMAP processors, which enable a single-chip world phone (GSM/EDGE/GPRS). "While the GPhone won't be revolutionary, it'll connect the pieces in pleasantly new ways," argues author Alex Wolfe. Should Apple be concerned?"

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205 comments

well (2, Insightful)

moogied (1175879) | more than 6 years ago | (#21352953)

It has a web browser that can play youtube..

and its can be on sprint?

Yes, Apple should become concerned.

Re:well (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21353307)

We should buy Google stocks now before it's too late. Don't miss the boat!

Re:well (1)

Andy Dodd (701) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353485)

Any Windows Mobile device (They exist for all carriers) can already do this.

Re:well (2, Insightful)

moogied (1175879) | more than 6 years ago | (#21354329)

yes but windows mobile is not exactly "User friendly". Its still marketed more towards CEO's and always gotta be in contact buiness type. They have not made a push to make it "cool" like google undoubtedbly will.

Article Website (4, Funny)

TheMeuge (645043) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353789)

Given the number of flash-based ads and overlays on this site, it's safe to assume that if Google can come up with a mobile platform that is capable of handling the page with TFA, they're geniuses.

I think I can answer that one... (2, Funny)

tgatliff (311583) | more than 6 years ago | (#21352969)

No. Apple should not be concerned because they are great are doing hardware... :-)

Re:I think I can answer that one... (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21352993)

No. Apple should not be concerned because they are great are doing hardware... :-) Great are Apple doing! With you agreed I am! Hardware Apple excelling is! :-)

Re:I think I can answer that one... (1)

snoyberg (787126) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353073)

No. Apple should not be concerned because they are great are doing hardware... :-)

I think Apple should be slightly worried. However, I think the same who will buy no mp3 player by an iPod will stick with the iPhone for the same reason: the bling factor.

I, on the other hand, didn't want an iPhone and do want a gPhone. I don't know how much of an overlap there is between the two groups, but my guess is its smaller than you'd think at first guess.

Re:I think I can answer that one... (2, Insightful)

bkr1_2k (237627) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353459)

I, on the other hand, didn't want an iPhone and do want a gPhone.

My question would be why do you want something you haven't even seen yet? For all we know the thing will be a monstrosity that doesn't work well anywhere. Are you simply saying you want one because it's Google or is there reason, other than a different form of fanboyism?

I'm not saying there's something wrong with supporting a company you like, just wondering whether there's some justification for your statement other than liking said company.

Re:I think I can answer that one... (4, Interesting)

snoyberg (787126) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353575)

I, on the other hand, didn't want an iPhone and do want a gPhone.

My question would be why do you want something you haven't even seen yet? For all we know the thing will be a monstrosity that doesn't work well anywhere. Are you simply saying you want one because it's Google or is there reason, other than a different form of fanboyism?

I'm not saying there's something wrong with supporting a company you like, just wondering whether there's some justification for your statement other than liking said company.

You are absolutely correct, the way I stated that sounded very much like fanboyism. Let me rephrase: before the iPhone came out, I was not interested in it at all based on the hype I'd heard surrounding it. By comparison, the gPhone sounds like something that I would want based on the hype.

Fair enough? If you're wondering, the main thing I like is the openness. Even if I wish they supported a language besides Java, it's still better than nothing.

Re:I think I can answer that one... (2)

bkr1_2k (237627) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353797)

Excellent response. It just seemed odd to me that it sounded like you had no other reason. I suppose I could have rightly suspected the open-initiative thing if I had bothered to consider it carefully.

I have to agree with that, and I'm interested to see what happens, despite the fact that I'm not very likely to buy one of these phones any time soon.

Not that I disagree with you... (1)

msimm (580077) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353863)

The final products are way too far off to know, but the software demo [youtube.com] did look promising and barring any hardware SNAFU's I don't see too much they can go wrong with (that can't be fixed from within the community).

Re:I think I can answer that one... (1)

edmicman (830206) | more than 6 years ago | (#21354863)

No. Apple should not be concerned because they are great are doing hardware... :-)
I think Apple should be slightly worried. However, I think the same who will buy no mp3 player by an iPod will stick with the iPhone for the same reason: the bling factor.
Ugh...my head hurts!

Re:I think I can answer that one... (1)

Cajun Hell (725246) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353703)

*sigh* This will eventually result in a new stupid meme. Apple will come out with a product, and Slashdotters will ask, "But does it run gPhone?"

I didn't think it was possible... (0)

SuperBanana (662181) | more than 6 years ago | (#21352999)

...but as of a day or two ago, I am more disgusted to hear the words "google" and "phone" than "iPhone."

In fact, in general, I'm tired of hearing about Google. (Filterable) category, please.

Are there any more things you dislike? (0, Troll)

Peaker (72084) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353125)

Because maybe you should tell us about them too!

I always enjoying hearing about things people find disgusting or that they dislike.

Its so interesting!

Re:Are there any more things you dislike? (1)

sm62704 (957197) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353239)

I always enjoying hearing about things people find disgusting or that they dislike.

Well then, my latest slashdot journal [slashdot.org] is just for you - not just a rant, but a curmudgeon rant! What more could you ask for?

-mcgrew

Re:I didn't think it was possible... (0, Troll)

jo42 (227475) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353417)

Some of us got tired of hearing "Google" all the time well over a year ago...

The only thing that they have done well is figured out how to make very many $$$$$$ by being advertising middlemen on the Internet. Otherwise they are a gaggle of high-educated idiots.

Re:I didn't think it was possible... (3, Insightful)

enomar (601942) | more than 6 years ago | (#21354817)

Yeah, all they've done is create a company with a market cap over 200 billion. They're dumb. You could have done that. What you're forgetting is that "being advertising middlemen" required them to create a huge, scalable infrastructure that spans the globe. Then they had to figure out the distributed software architecture to make it all work. I love when people say Google doesn't innovate or that they buy all their products. What few people realize is that Google is the Walmart of technology. They've innovated by engineering massively scalable, highly distributed systems AND they've figured how to incorporate dozens of great applications into that infrastructure. They have essentially streamlined the "information supply chain". What have you done?

It's for protection... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21353015)

Protection from what? Zee Germans?

5 years behind apple (3, Interesting)

backslashdot (95548) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353057)

According to some patents, Apple may be working on cooler stuff like pressure sensitive screens etc.

Also, the resolution of most Open Handest/android applications are going to be for QVGA screens since that is what the SDK encourages. It will look like shrunken crap on VGA or WVGA screens, so dont expect any handset vendors to make decently priced phones above QVGA.

So, in short, the iPhone 2 will be 4 years ahead of any Google Open Handset Alliance phone.

-Johan

PS> Maybe google should have made this platform good for non mobvile phone stuff too like for in cars or whatever

No, actually that's wrong (3, Informative)

nilbog (732352) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353079)

The processor used in the first Google phones will more likely be the Qualcomm 7200. This is the new chip going into the latest HTC phones (such as the AT&T Tilt/Kaiser/Tytn II/whatever). It is a dual CPU that integrates the Imageon hardware for 2d and 3d graphics acceleration. I believe this is HTC's current choice for their first "gPhone."

Although Qualcomm hasn't released a proper SDK for the processor yet, so hardware acceleration is not fully implemented.

Re:No, actually that's wrong (3, Informative)

Andy Dodd (701) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353521)

I was about to make the same comment, for different reasons - I get the impression that it's nearly impossible to implement a UMTS phone without using a Qualcomm MSM, at least while remaining cost competitive with an MSM-based solution. TI's OMAP series are still EDGE-only.

It's not a dual core CPU. There's a second coprocessor core that is for radio functions ONLY. It's not an SMP dual core CPU.

Yay! (3, Funny)

Quiet_Desperation (858215) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353111)

Another cell phone! Woot! The market was so sparse!

Maybe they can release an MP3 player next! Boo-yeah! Or a WW2 FPS game!

Re:Yay! (1)

stormguard2099 (1177733) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353689)

I won't cave to the fad until I can mindlessly talk on my phone, play a WWII FPS AND listen to fallout boy ALL at the same time on the same device!! I'm sure everyone else on the metro will love me for it!

Re:Yay! (1)

FiveRings (818409) | more than 6 years ago | (#21355053)

Your comment's kinda funny, but if you look at the Asian markets, they have 10x more choices than the US cell phone market as well as being years ahead technologically.

Maybe I want the option of paying for things at a vending machine with my phone...maybe I don't. Or a browser. Or touchscreen. Or 3D. Or video. Or monkeys.

So ya...

"Another cell phone! Woot! The market was so sparse!" minus the sarcasm.

the gPhone and the iPhone are different markets (0, Flamebait)

netsavior (627338) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353119)

Apple makes fashion accessories.

Google makes software that works.

There is hardly any market overlap. I mean seriously you can't use the iPhone for business, you can't use it to omgkfcbbq Instantmessage your friends. You can't use it for social networking. You can use it to show off that you paid 600 dollars for an animated MP3 player with integrated google maps, and a fun voicemail toy.

Should Prada be worried that Samsonite is comming out with a new suitcase line? No Prada sells expensive jewelry that looks like a purse, Samsonite sells luggage.

The iPhone is jewelery, it doesn't have to worry about ANY Phone competing with it.

Re:the gPhone and the iPhone are different markets (2, Interesting)

2nd Post! (213333) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353271)

Funny, I would have said:
Apple makes hardware that works
Google makes software that works

You misinterpret the iPhone's initial market if you think it is suitable for business (it isn't), for instant messaging (it doesn't have that feature), or social networking (unless you want to use the built in Safari web browser).

All the iPhone does (for now) is:
Phone
Internet
Media
A light smattering of accessory applications

And I only paid $300 for mine. $600 was so four months ago. The 8GB iPhone is only $399.

And at the things it does, meaning phone, internet, and media, I have never seen another phone nearly as good. And as time goes on, Apple will be adding more and more features with, I presume, the same usability and polish that the first three applications shipped with.

There is significant overlap between Google and Apple, in this case, in that Apple provides the ultimate prototypical platform for a gPhone while Google provides the ultimate framework for developing the applications and UI that the iPhone OR gPhone would need.

Re:the gPhone and the iPhone are different markets (1)

bkr1_2k (237627) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353557)

"You misinterpret the iPhone's initial market if you think it is suitable for business (it isn't), for instant messaging (it doesn't have that feature), or social networking (unless you want to use the built in Safari web browser)."
Which is why the GP said (bold emphasis mine): "I mean seriously you can't use the iPhone for business, you can't use it to omgkfcbbq Instantmessage your friends. You can't use it for social networking."

Other than that, I agree with you completely. Google will make an OS that will provide programmers the capability to do everything the iPhone should do. But with the SDK out now (or soon) for the iPhone, I expect we'll see a lot more functionality for the iPhone long before the google phone ever hits the market.

Re:the gPhone and the iPhone are different markets (1)

Mysticalfruit (533341) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353967)

It's good to see competition actually work. For everbodys sake, the gphone only has to be a marginal success before owners of iphones will demand that apple add features like IM.

What will be interesting, once the iphone SDK comes up, what you'll actually be able to do. I'm suspecting that every application that goes on the iPhone will have to be signed by apple, etc... Thus, getting mame on your iphone without voiding your warrenty will be out of the question.

Re:the gPhone and the iPhone are different markets (1)

bkr1_2k (237627) | more than 6 years ago | (#21354319)

I'm not really familiar with the SDKs since I'm not a coder, but I don't believe this is the way the OS X/aqua/whatever is appropriate SDK works so why would the iPhone SDK work that way?

I mean, the point of releasing the SDK is specifically so people can create software they want, within Apple's current framework. Obviously they're not going to provide tools that allow you to break current functionality limits or cause contract concerns with AT&T, but why would adding mame or IM be any kind of issue?

Re:the gPhone and the iPhone are different markets (1)

2nd Post! (213333) | more than 6 years ago | (#21354431)

If the SDK is constructed such that all programs are "encrypted", digitally signed as it were, and iPhones crafted that they would only run signed code, then third party unsupported software would have to be hacked to run on an iPhone, no different than today.

Re:the gPhone and the iPhone are different markets (1, Informative)

teknopurge (199509) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353309)

Apple makes fashion accessories.

Google makes software that works.
LOL [google.com]

Re:the gPhone and the iPhone are different markets (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21354457)

ROTFLMAO [google.com]

Re:the gPhone and the iPhone are different markets (1)

AaxelB (1034884) | more than 6 years ago | (#21354631)

Apple makes fashion accessories.

Google makes software that works.
LOL [google.com]

Hmm, that actually seems like relatively few results for "$PRODUCT problems". Especially if you compare to the results for "iphone problems" [google.com] or "ipod problems" [google.com] .

(For a cheap laugh, compare to "vista problems" [google.com] )

Re:the gPhone and the iPhone are different markets (1)

teknopurge (199509) | more than 6 years ago | (#21354951)

Agreed, however, you need to compare apples-to-apples, or at least more closely then a webmail application to an operating system or piece of hardware.

"mail.app problems" [google.com]

Re:the gPhone and the iPhone are different markets (1)

nine-times (778537) | more than 6 years ago | (#21354013)

Apple makes fashion accessories.

Google makes software that works.

I'll be sure to inform the users of OSX, iWork, iLife, Aperture, Final Cut, and Logic that Apple's software does not work.

Re:the gPhone and the iPhone are different markets (1, Insightful)

99BottlesOfBeerInMyF (813746) | more than 6 years ago | (#21354205)

Apple makes fashion accessories.

I'm probably responding to a troll, but, Apple makes hardware/software/service solution that are usable for the average person. The iPod created the mainstream market for portable digital music players because it was the first one where the entire user experience was easy enough for the average person (who until then was using a portable CD player). Until Apple stepped in it was too hard for most people to buy music online, rip CDs, and load that onto the player.

The iPhone is the same thing all over again, but replacing "portable music player" with "smartphone." It is the first cell phone with Web and e-mail, an organizer, a music player, SMS, and a few apps that is actually usable for the average Joe.

A lot of people don't understand Apple's success and try to dismiss it. They look at bullet points of features and the price and think Apple is providing too little for too much money. For some people, especially technical people that like to tinker, that is true. For the average person, however there is a lot of value in a polished user interface and overall experience.

Google makes software that works.

My experience is Google makes online services that work, and mediocre software to interface with them.

Re:the gPhone and the iPhone are different markets (0, Troll)

netsavior (627338) | more than 6 years ago | (#21354849)

I will agree that ease of use is important, and that apple products tend to do ok at this. But you have got to be fooling yourself if you think that the average n00b had any reason to other than fashion ditch their 8gb iPod in favor of a 20 40 80 whatever. sure they play video now, but I somehow doubt Joe sixpack is ready to pay $12,000 on iTunes, or even rip 12,000 of his own songs, or even use his pod as a usb drive to transfer files. The features, the convenience, the interface did NOT sell iPods. At least not to the average user in my experience. The distinctive earbuds are probably the most important feature in that device and I am not trying to be facetious. It is definatly more important to be seen with an iPod than it is to have one. Look at the commercials. Look at the Mac store. If you still say it is not about fashion first and technology second, I guess I lost ya. Beyond occasional searching for music to play a particular song, I have not really met anyone who needed a slick interface on their Music files, they just hit random and go. Not only that, but how many people bought an iPod because it was the greatest thing ever and N-E-V-E-R use it? Well the iPhone solves that problem by making a fashion sensitive device that you will use, for which you do need the functionality. If the iPhone was exactly an iPod with no new interface but with a simple cellphone built in, I believe the success would be very similar. The iPhone is a very good way to get people to pay monthly to be seen with the latest (or at least standard) slick gadget. It really is very smart from a fashion perspective.

Ummm.. CDMA? (2, Informative)

LWATCDR (28044) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353137)

"Texas Instruments' OMAP processors, which enable a single-chip world phone (GSM/EDGE/GPRS)"
Funny how that is a "world" phone. GSM is only a standard for Europe. In North American you have both GSM and CDMA, Korea is mostly CDMA and I think Japan is also uses a lot of CDMA.
Also Sprint is one of the carriers that is involved in this and they only do CDMA.

Re:Ummm.. CDMA? (4, Insightful)

crunzh (1082841) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353411)

GSM is the most used standard in the world. There are no significant country that only runs CDMA and only one that dont support GSM (Japan), even korea have gsm networks. So a world phone needs to support GSM.

Re:Ummm.. CDMA? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21353623)

The facts are actually against you.

South Korea is transitioning to WiMax and W-CDMA (HSDPA data access) with LG Telecom remaining the sole CDMA provider for the time being.

Japan is the progenitor of W-CDMA with both NTT DoCoMo and SoftBank Mobile using the standard with HSDPA data access, while KDDI's AU is the sole CDMA carrier on the island. GSM and its high-speed variants (including W-CDMA) are in use in over 140 countries according to the ITU.

Re:Ummm.. CDMA? (4, Informative)

king-manic (409855) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353627)

"Texas Instruments' OMAP processors, which enable a single-chip world phone (GSM/EDGE/GPRS)"
Funny how that is a "world" phone. GSM is only a standard for Europe. In North American you have both GSM and CDMA, Korea is mostly CDMA and I think Japan is also uses a lot of CDMA.
Also Sprint is one of the carriers that is involved in this and they only do CDMA.
GSM: All or Europe/Russia, most of Asia including china and th ephilipines, most of India, Australia, most of Africa, and most of south America
CDMA: US, Canada, Japan, Korea.

I think your point about GSM only being for Europe is very much wrong. GSM covers a great deal more countries then CDMA. It's a world phone because you can take a GSM phone to nearly any country with cell service and buy a sim card and get connected. With a CDMA phone coverage is sparse or non existent in anywhere but the 4 countries I listed.

Re:Ummm.. CDMA? (1, Informative)

LynnwoodRooster (966895) | more than 6 years ago | (#21354885)

Funny, I travel extensively for a living, and my CDMA-only phone (LG "The V") works in China, Japan, South Korea, Thailand, India, Australia, Chile, Brazil, Columbia, Argentina, Hong Kong, New Zealand, Philippines, Taiwan, Russia, Poland, Norway, Denmark, Canada, Mexico and a host of other countries...

In fact, it's really only Western Europe that is GSM-only (barring Portugal, Iceland, Ireland and those listed above). The rest of the world is pretty much dual-standard supporting both CDMA and GSM.

Re:Ummm.. CDMA? (1)

bkr1_2k (237627) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353647)

Yes GSM isn't necessarily as heavily adopted everywhere as it is in Europe, but it is most definitely more widespread than anything else. Despite what Japan and Korea do, the rest of Asia uses GSM fairly consistently. At least China (#1 GSM market worldwide), Cambodia, Vietnam, Laos, Indonesia, and Thailand. India also has a growing GSM market.

CDMA may well be a technology that is chosen as it is growing more rapidly than GSM due to 3G application apparently, but I wouldn't hold my breath if I were you. People like the ability to move around the globe and use local providers, and right now GSM is the only way to do that I know about but I'm not up on the latest mobile technologies, admittedly, so there may be some other technology that allows that easily.

http://www.cellular.co.za/news_2002/120302-cdma_now_has_159m_users_worldwid.htm [cellular.co.za]

Re:Ummm.. CDMA? (1)

Andy Dodd (701) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353655)

"World" means "At least one carrier in every area supports it", not "works with every carrier in existence".

The U.S. supports both GSM and CDMA.
Same for Japan - DoCoMo is GSM/UMTS. KDDI is CDMA2000 I believe. Fairly certain Softbank is also GSM, as many HTC GSM devices are rebranded by Softbank.

I think Korea is one of the few (if only) countries that has no GSM service at all. (And they may have a GSM carrier.)

That said - If you read TI's pages carefully, they market themselves as a manufacturer of "3G" chipsets, but somehow despite providing "3G" chipsets, you cannot find any information on UMTS products anywhere. All of their OMAPs depend on an external (TCS) wireless interface chipsets. They have them for CDMA2000 EVDO I think, but not UMTS. GSM capability from TI is limited to EDGE.

Re:Ummm.. CDMA? (1)

cyngus (753668) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353997)

"Funny how that is a "world" phone. GSM is only a standard for Europe."

Wrong, try again. CDMA is used in the US, Korea, and Japan, that's it. I know Japan also has GSM available.

GSM on the other hand is used in the US (AT&T and T-Mobile), North America, South America, Europe, Africa, Australia, and Asia (except maybe Korea). So yes, GSM *does* make it a world phone. Good luck using that CDMA in Nigeria!

Re:Ummm.. CDMA? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21354223)

CDMA is largely an american effort at producing a mobile network technology. It's not a standard (there are a number of different flavours and two seperate ISO standards), whilst GSM is, and is used by an estimated 82% of mobile users, so GSM can be classed as a worldwide standard, whereas CDMA isn't even standardised across different carriers in the US. Plus W-CDMA, as used in 3G networks, isn't related to CDMA.

The Wikipedia article comparing the various standards shows GSM at 80-85% market share, CDMA at 10-15% and various niche technologies making up the remaining percentage. CDMA market growth is basically flat, growing as the market grows, but not gaining any market share. GSM, including W-CDMA (which as mentioned above isn't related to CDMA) is slowly gaining market share at the expense of the niche technologies.

Lastly, CDMA is why the American market get fewer decent handsets than Europe and the far east, so if it did have the massive market share the parent suggests, then surely more companies would be building cutting edge handsets based on this technology?

What about the Neo? (4, Interesting)

thefekete (1080115) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353161)

Has any one tried running android on a Neo1973?

Re:What about the Neo? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21354857)

I want Android on my Palm! (Palm should be shitting it's pants right now, not Apple!)

Apple's iPhone is much less significant. (3, Informative)

radimvice (762083) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353169)

Apple's iPhone is a single, phone that's very well-designed and includes a slick interface. Oh yeah, and it has the Apple brand (and the corresponding price tag). Reports are that Apple's phone managed to successfully establish itself a niche in the mobile phone world, but that they failed to sell as many as they had hoped.

Google's Android platform, on the other hand, is more than just a single gPhone, as they like to say it's 'thousands of phones', made by dozens of companies, spanning the super high-end iPhone killers to the low-end cheap free-after-rebates you get with your carrier subscription. The operations that Google has set into motion - departing from the traditional JCP standards process, releasing a new non-Sun Java-like Virtual Machine - these moves have a huge potential to transform the entire mobile phone industry as a whole - and, though it's still early to say for sure, the transformation will more than likely be for the better.

So Apple's iPhone is a great, very well-designed product for a few people, but it is overall much less significant than the potential Android has to seriously shake up and inject innovation into the mobile industry. The two are honestly nothing alike, as much as the media would like them to be.

-Will [ohadev.com]

Re:Apple's iPhone is much less significant. (5, Insightful)

2nd Post! (213333) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353301)

Isn't that like arguing, in 2001, that the iPod was a single device while the PlaysForSure platform was hundreds of MP3 players made by dozens of companies spanning both the high end and low end... that ultimate got killed by the iPod Classic at the high end, the iPod nano in the middle, and iPod shuffle on the low end?

You don't think Apple will repeat history in 2007 with the iPhone what they did in 2001 with the iPod?

Re:Apple's iPhone is much less significant. (2, Insightful)

taskiss (94652) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353871)

No, it's like arguing that 2 birds in the bush are better than a bird in the hand.

Re:Apple's iPhone is much less significant. (1)

pebs (654334) | more than 6 years ago | (#21354529)

You don't think Apple will repeat history in 2007 with the iPhone what they did in 2001 with the iPod?

Not while AT&T is the only service provider.

Re:Apple's iPhone is much less significant. (1)

2nd Post! (213333) | more than 6 years ago | (#21355005)

The iPod was originally Mac only, for the first 9 months. That didn't seem to stop it, either.

The AT&T bundle works to both parties advantage, for now. Don't think the landscape won't change in six months; Apple is probably working on a 3G phone as we speak.

Re:Apple's iPhone is much less significant. (1)

e2d2 (115622) | more than 6 years ago | (#21354559)

You don't think Apple will repeat history in 2007 with the iPhone what they did in 2001 with the iPod?

Not really, considering 2007 is almost over and I have yet to meet anyone with an iPhone. Yet almost everyone I know has an iPod or a clone. Now I may be wrong but I thought the consensus on the iPhone was "meh" at best and "piece of sh#@!" at worst. Did I not get the memo?

Google is not going after Apple's iPhone, they are trying to change wireless all together. They see wireless as the greatest way to deliver internet and all it entails globally.

Hype? Let's look at two things:

1. Google's attempt to acquire the 700mhz band for use from the FCC
2. Open Handset development - android and related hardware.

So here we have a company trying to reinvent the market through the infrastructure - Google. And then we have Apple making it's flagship entrance into the mobile market with one specific vendor, with barely anything innovative beyond the hardware touchscreen and a few other nice to haves that can easily be cloned by any hardware manufacturer, including Google's OHA hardware partners.

So comparing these two is really just a misunderstanding about what android is and what the Open Handset Alliance is really about. Hell Apple's iPhone could even benefit from Google's initiative!

I might be wrong but opening up the development platform and then having them put their full weight behind it might really shake things up. It's not hype, it's real and it may even benefit you.

Re:Apple's iPhone is much less significant. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21354713)

I know multiple people with iPhones. When my old roommate bought a first-gen iPod, he was the only person any of us knew who had one. Clearly not such a good indicator of future success.

"that can easily be cloned by any hardware manufacturer"? Have you ever used Windows, or held a Zune in your hand? Just because you can copy the details doesn't mean the end result will be as good as the original. People have been trying to copy Apple for ages and haven't gotten it right. Other companies make stuff that's just as good, but those that try to out-Apple Apple usually seem to fail.

-A

Re:Apple's iPhone is much less significant. (1)

2nd Post! (213333) | more than 6 years ago | (#21354919)

You compare four months of iPhone availability against six years of iPod availability and think the iPhone is a failure?

The iPod was released in October of 2001 and didn't hit 1 million iPods until June of 2003, almost 2 years later. Conversely the iPhone hit 1m only 3 months after release, and you somehow thing iPhones are a flop? Or did you run around in 2003 saying, "I have yet to see an iPod, and the consensus is lame"?

I'm not decrying Google's Android at all. I have high hopes for it (especially since I own GOOG), but where we disagree is that I think the iPhone has a great impact AND it will benefit from Android.

Re:Apple's iPhone is much less significant. (1)

nametaken (610866) | more than 6 years ago | (#21354663)


People really only insist that their ipod plays music, looks nice, and is easy enough to use. Not necessarily in that order.

People insist that their mobile phones do virtually every task known to modern computing. With Apple being openly hostile to tinkerers, hobbyists, developers and deathly allergic to competition... they're doomed in the business phone market. They've been like this for decades, and as such I sincerely doubt they'll change things up just so they can fight every dug-in mobile phone and mobile phone OS manufacturer in the world. Seriously, are they going to write world-class integration with Exchange to simultaneously compete with, and support, Microsoft? Hell no. Will someone write it for Andriod? You can bet your ass.

I'll bet that more than one group are already working on the prize money from Google writing a mobile outlook work-alike.

Re:Apple's iPhone is much less significant. (1)

2nd Post! (213333) | more than 6 years ago | (#21354813)

What makes you think the Google SDK and iPhone SDK are incompatible?

Regardless, your point is irrelevant. Apple has an incredibly successful and profitable niche without directly addressing the business environment, yet.

Re:Apple's iPhone is much less significant. (1)

aztektum (170569) | more than 6 years ago | (#21354711)

The only *REAL* problem with the iPhone is AT&T.

$399 is hardly the classic Apple price tag. Yeah sure there is the 2yr service agreement, but anyone buying an iPhone probably has budgeted that into their lives for a while now anyway.

For the innovative interface and the included function of the device, this has to be one of Apple's LEAST "over priced" products. People keep saying "It's just a phone." It's a wifi enabled multifunction device, and yes a proper SDK is still vaporware, but it's coming. Try buying a wifi PDA, wifi digital camera (ok it's crap), a wifi mp3 player, and a cellular phone with an interface an invalid could navigate, all for $399 (without rebates or other glitzy bullshit marketing promos).

Personally, I think something like that is what computers WILL be in 10 years or more. All the user ends up doing is docking it. If that's the case, you know Apple will be getting props with it's "antique iPhone", deserved or not. They're like Blizzard of the hardware world. They take obvious fucking ideas, cutting edge technology, and sell it in a form that anyone from nerd to grandma loves. Apple isn't perfect but at least they try (and this is only their first stab at it).

FWIW, I'm not even an Apple fanboi. I bought my first iPod last March (when my 512 flash one died and I only bought an iPod because of how familiar I was with the interface) and haven't touched their PC's outside a retail store at all this year. I'd say the iPhone is far more useful for more than a few people. The gPhone demos don't really do anything that the iPhone doesn't. Only time will tell.

Predicting? (1)

sm62704 (957197) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353175)

Hey, I'm great at prediction. Just listen to what I say, [mcgrew.info] and the exact opposite [slashdot.org] will happen.

I've noticed that most prognosticators are about on a par with me, or even worse. What's that meme, er, something about nothing and moving along?

-mcgrew

FPS (universal MMOG) (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21353213)

I think there needs to be a universal FPS engine so anyone can battle!
Lets talk about mobile gaming. GIS's. Tag...

ILKO

Not the end but the means that's important (1)

wonkavader (605434) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353511)

Um, well, yeah, that's a good idea, though it's not going to kill the iPhone. But what could cause such a thing to be launched IS a way to kill the iPhone. A really open platform that's easy to develop on. A plethora of free, fun, useful apps, some of which will be amazing and an overnight success in a way that the phone itself won't be.

Someone here pointed out that Apple is a Prada to Google's Samsonite. As far as people see it that way (and there are lots, I know), Apple has nothing to worry about. But the gPhone will slowly catch up and pass, in terms of functionality, and will develop some incredible applications, because of the sheer number of people who could develop for it.

The iPhone is going to be for people who are willing to pay a LOT more for both a phone and for phone calls, in return for status and slick user interface. But the gPhone will be what they're forced to use so they can get applications they need, either for business or just life.

It will most probably look like the emulator (3, Insightful)

ishmalius (153450) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353303)

If you download the Android SDK, and run the emulator, you will see what the phone will almost certainly look like.

dontgooglemebro (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21353319)

Don't Google me, bro!

sleek userinterface? (2, Interesting)

mixenmaxen (857917) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353337)

Am I the only one to think that the "sleek user interface" looks like Winamp pimped up by a Paris Hilton loving teenager? Not exactly a sleek user interface.

I think that Apple has nothing to worry about in this regard.

Opera Mini? (2, Informative)

feranick (858651) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353355)

TFA goes a long way suggesting the GPhone will sport Opera Mini as its default browser. Although it will be possible to run any piece of software (according to Sergei Brin), in its current form, the Android platform already has a quite capable browser, based on WebKit. I can't see what Opera Mini can do that it's not possible within the built in browser. I was testing it yesterday on the Android emulator and the browser is both fast and accurate in rendering. I am sure Opera will make a Gphone version, but I bet Mozilla will too. In other words, it won't matter what browser will be ported, because the user will have a great deal of choice.

This is no iPhone (which is Safari only...).

good luck (5, Interesting)

burris (122191) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353369)

I remember when ACE was announced. For you youngin's, the Advanced Computing Environment was an alliance of Compaq, Microsoft, MIPS Computer Systems, Digital Equipment Corporation, and the Santa Cruz Operation to build the next generation of computers in 1991. Basically, they wanted to wrestle control of the industry away from Intel. Steve Jobs was famously quoted as saying industry alliances always fail because there are just too many competing interests. He challenged people to name some successful industry alliances.

Can anyone name some successful computer industry alliances composed of competing members? This alliance has tons of members who compete directly with each other: handset manufacturers, software companies, chip manufacturers. The idea that these companies are going to align all of their interests, come together and produce anything is pretty far fetched IMHO.

Re:good luck (0)

jmcdood (1068930) | more than 6 years ago | (#21354229)

Java has been quite successful (not so much at applets, of course, but otherwise) and it is developed and supported by a consortium of major companies (JSRs, JVMs, etc). Anyway, it's pretty clear that Android is being led by Google and they're using Java as an example to follow.

Is it really an alliance? (2, Interesting)

rmcd (53236) | more than 6 years ago | (#21354573)

I think that calling this an alliance is just PR. Maybe I'm missing something, but they don't all have to produce the same thing. They don't have to use exactly the same application software, they don't have to use the same form factor, they don't have to agree on which features to ship or enable.

This seems more to me like the industry following Compaq and standardizing on the IBM BIOS in the early 1980s. With that decision out of the way, you could produce computers in a variety of form factors with whatever software you wanted. There was a base on which to build.

In this case, Google seems firmly in control because they've already built a basic and extensible software platform. They're not asking for agreement, they're saying here it is, who wants to use it, and who wants to extend it?

It seems to me that what's critical is gaining critical mass before the platform forks (which it will eventually).

Re:good luck (1)

north.coaster (136450) | more than 6 years ago | (#21354659)

Ethernet.

It was originally invented by Xerox, which later teamed up with Digital Equipment Corporation and Intel to define the DIX standard. Lot's other companies then jumped on the band wagon.

The rest is history.

iPhone is Part of the Apple Ecosystem (1)

BoRegardless (721219) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353419)

The question is whether gPhone can establish a profound ecosystem of its own. It might do so & still not materially affect Apple, since Apple is offering an integraded personal digital ecosystem that gPhone is not aiming for in Android.

Besides everything else, I predict that given Google's tight relationship with Apple, we will see Google ads at some point on the iPhone.

With the volume of handsets worldwide, there is plenty of room for 2-3 GREAT players.

I'd buy one because... (1)

Boomer_Zz (548219) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353491)

Google will probably let me do what I want with it and not try to brick it. I bet I have access to it's memory intentionally!

Re:I'd buy one because... (3, Insightful)

C0rinthian (770164) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353555)

Not after the cellular provider is done with it...

Re:I'd buy one because... (1)

BotnetZombie (1174935) | more than 6 years ago | (#21354815)

That only applies to the US, and only there as long as none of the major carriers gives in to the inevitable pressure for non-restriction.

Re:I'd buy one because... (1)

j.sanchez1 (1030764) | more than 6 years ago | (#21354039)

Google will probably let me do what I want with it and not try to brick it. I bet I have access to it's memory intentionally!

Exactly. I am not a mobile developer, but I'd like to be able to do things like add music, ringtones and wallpapers with just a USB cable (without feeling like I am "hacking" it) or like Open Moko is doing [openmoko.org] , let me change the "theme" of the UI easily.

Article is not informed (1)

NicenessHimself (619194) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353513)

Its clearly not from someone in the business. As someone in the business, but not involved in gphone, take my word for it.

There is no "gPhone" (1)

sound+vision (884283) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353519)

I'd like to correct the misconception (which wasn't really addressed in the summary) that Google will be producing a singular gPhone. What they are doing is forming an alliance with various hardware manufacturers and software developers to create a standard that phones can be developed to. So what we will have will be a multitude of phones conforming to the alliance's standards, thus having similar capabilities.

Playing catch-up (1)

rueger (210566) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353559)

Let's ignore the touch screen, which I'm not sure is the greatest idea for a cel phone anyhow. Beyond that I'm comparing the features promised by both Apple and Google to a Nokia N82 [reghardware.co.uk] soon available in Europe and I see:

It boasts a five-megapixel camera with a xenon flash and Carl Zeiss optics, and sports a 2.4in display that rotates from portrait to landscape view at the flick of a wrist, thanks to a built in accelerometer. The device includes Assisted GPS technology ... and compensates for weak satellite signals by sending data about your current location over your carrier's network ... several TomTom-esque maps come preinstalled and Nokia's thrown in a trial of its voice-guided navigation utility... it's also a quad-band GSM/GPRS/Edge device and can make HSDPA 3G connections for data and video calls. There's 802.11b/g Wi-Fi connectivity on-board, and downloaded content can be stored on the bundled 2GB Micro SD card. Additional connectivity options include USB 2.0 and Bluetooth, with A2DP for streaming audio to wireless headphone...
I haven't sat down to do a side by side comparison, but this sure looks like a more useful tool than what Apple and Google are selling. The Nokia looks like it would do everything that I want from a phone, and includes features that the Apple at least lacks.

uhhh (2, Informative)

dfj225 (587560) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353633)

Well, you could do all that or go to the Android site (code.google.com/android) and download the SDK as well as watch the developer videos that are posted. Having done this, you can see the UI as it stands now. Which, by the way, is very different (and much more pleasant, IMHO) than what is shown in the images linked from TFA.

In addition, you can also see from the SDK's emulator what chip is being emulated (ARM926EJ-S [41069265] revision 5) and how much ram is available (96MB) and so on.

Why so much pure speculation when there is much more accurate data available from the published SDK?

Why Predict? Here's a Demo (2, Informative)

asphaltjesus (978804) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353805)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jb2N0QzX1NI [youtube.com]

This doesn't look particularly revolutionary from an end-user perspective. The video uses a bunch of different buttons to do stuff, so I don't know how a touch screen would improve matters dramatically.

If someone says, "Just wait. It'll be great!" I dunno, there appears to be a bunch of gui-stuff already done and that's the hardest and least sexy part of the work that hardly anyone is willing to re-do.

gPhone : iPhone :: PC : Macintosh (1)

Shimmer (3036) | more than 6 years ago | (#21353853)

And we all know how that turned out for Apple (vs. Intel/Microsoft).

If you want a high-end phone and are willing to pay a premium so that that software and hardware work together seamlessly (because they're both made by the same company), you'll buy an Apple iPhone.

If you want a commodity phone that runs a ubiquitous UI (OS), but maybe doesn't work perfectly in all situations (e.g. driver problems), you'll buy a gPhone containing standardized hardware (read: cheap, in both senses of the word).

Apple will continue to be the high-end boutique. But someone else will make most of the money.

Not the hardware - the IDEA (5, Insightful)

SharpFang (651121) | more than 6 years ago | (#21354187)

The phone itself, if ever created as such (and not just a dozen platform-compliant phones from different manufacturers) won't be revolutionary by and in itself.

It's the software it can come with that is the true revolution. You'll get a fully programmable, and EASILY programmable device providing you with mostly everything you desire. And because of the 'free software' idea, you won't be limited by silly patents.

Imagine this:
Combine GPS capablity (positioning relative to specific BTS, not the satellites) with ringer phone settings: entering theatre or lecture hall turns "silent" on.
Hack the GSM connection or even bluetooth, and you have a functional walkie-talkie for short-range talking for free.
Port Gameboy, NES and some more emulators.
Allow for morse code SMS text input (way faster than multitap, often faster than T9) and readout (read SMS without taking the phone off your pocket)
Skype->VoIP could come cheaper than most mobile connection rates (especially interntational)
GPS without GPS module - use BTS pings to triangulate your location and find yourself on Google Maps.
All kinds of weird shit you can pull out with the multitap, including fingers-smearing OpenCanvas-like multiplayer painting.
Combine a few of these for a bigger screen.
Use a bluetooth full-size PC qwerty keyboard. Maybe somehow a 17" screen too.
Emulate iPhone (and annoy the shit off Mac users)
Combine it with some GPIO hardware and use it to drive stuff remotely (a car?)
Get a handful of simple hardware (maybe Chineese will produce something that will plug into USB), run the emulator with modifications and change your laptop or even desktop into a (rather big) gPhone.
Build your own. The specs are quite open.
Run a modified manager process that keeps 95% of the phone's features powered down unless you specifically switch them on (including screen and most of the software) keeping the phone to run two weeks on a single charge (all power used by other chips goes to GSM).
Stream mp3s from your home server.
Use internal temp sensors and battery controller for a "hand warmer" function.
Scanner, Mouse (using camera) or Trackpad (using touchscreen) for PC.
Precisely tune the vibration motor timing, accelerometer input and the camera input and change the phone into an RC/autonomic vehicle moving using vibrations of precise waveform making it slide in a specific direction... ...and a thousand more which are just too difficult with Symbian and iPhone.

We don't need new technology! (3, Insightful)

erroneus (253617) | more than 6 years ago | (#21354211)

We need today's technology unhindered! Every time you turn around, the phone companies reduce or remove functionality built into the phones so they can make more money somehow... preventing people from sending attachments, preventing people from creating and transferring their own ring tones to their phones from their PCs and on and on and on.

We don't need anything that's not already available. We just need something unbroken.
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